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Damen converts 2013-built PSV into a fish feed carrier

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Conversion will see 650 tons of new steel go into vessel, while 300 tons of redundant structure will be removed

Norwegian fish feed distribution specialist Eidsvaag has contracted Damen Shipyards to convert a platform supply vessel into a fish feed carrier.

“One of the main things that made Damen stand out as a strong candidate in the tender process was their previous experience with the vessel,” says Vidar Eidsvaag, general manager and owner at Eidsvaag.

The vessel, now renamed Eidsvaag Opal, was part of a six-vessel order Damen built for offshore supply company, World Wide Supply, and was delivered in 2013 as the World Opal.

The tender for the conversion was won by Damen Shiprepair Amsterdam (DSAm), which was the most suitable shipyard in the group for the project, based on its facilities. Also a factor was its proximity to Niron Staal, Damen’s specialist steel fabricator, as the conversion involves a lot of steelwork.

The Eidsvaag Opal arrived at the yard in the final weeks of 2019. The first task was the removal of the main deck, after which the vessel was cut in half and sub-contractor Mammoet moved the aft section of the vessel 10 meters back in order to allow space for the fitting of a new 4.9-meter section.

Another 31 new steel fabrications are now being inserted into the hull and divided into sponsons and a new “big bag” hold. In total, 650 tonnes of new steel will be fabricated by Niron Staal and installed in Eidsvaag Opal while she is in dry dock at DSAm. Some 300 tons of redundant ship’s structure will also be removed as part of the conversion process.

The project will also include increasing the beam with side boxes to give additional stability and extra cargo capacity.

When complete, the vessel will be able to transport 2,800 tons of feed at a time and will be fitted with five new cranes and a feed discharger.

Damen’s previous track record includes the conversion of a Damen Combi Coaster into a fish feed transportation vessel. That job involved the shipbuilder shortening the vessel in order to provide the added maneuverability necessary for operating within fish farms. The vessel was then outfitted with 64 silos for the transportation of different types of fish food.

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